Using Blockchain to improve health access to unhoused people

1) Sustainability Problem (Safety and Health): Unhoused people (aka homeless) are part of a systematic cycle that hinders their safety and progress. Many displaced individuals lose their personal documents including birth certificates, licenses, social security card, etc. This makes it extremely difficult to rent, get a job, and receive medical attention.

2) Dell Medical School developing technology to improve access to health care for homeless population

  • The question posed by Dell Medical School is “How do you get more access to health care and social service resources for people experiencing homelessness in Austin?” In a study, the school found that 1/3 of people trying to get medical attention did not have documents to prove their identity.
  • Dr. Tim Mercer, director of the global health program at Dell, and his colleagues are trying to use Blockchain technology to create a system in which information and identity documents can be stored and used across different platforms and institutions.
  • The technology would store the data provided in one medical provider the information would be updated and stored so that if the person goes to another provider or tries to obtain human services their information is already available.
  • This blockchain system would help not only those experiencing homelessness, but also allow those trying to provide services to more efficiently do their job
  • This blockchain technology is being developed and is in it’s initial steps through student led research and testing.

3.) Stakeholders

  • People experiencing homelessness
  • Doctors/Nurses/etc.
  • Human Services providers
  • Health/Human Services office staff

4) Implementation Steps:

  1. Further research: testing and trying to perfect the blockchain further in every attempt to ensure the system speaks to each other but also is ethically ran
  2. Securing further funding via grants, investment, etc.
  3. Community involvement: Speaking with the populations that will be directly affected by the technology (i.e. stakeholders) and ensuring this meet their needs



Hybrid Aircrafts

1) Sustainability Problem (Energy): According to the World Wildlife Organization, “aviation is one of the fastest-growing sources of the greenhouse gas emissions driving global climate change.” It is also the largest individual contributor to the carbon footprint and is exponentially higher than any other source. Reducing consumption would be one of the quickest ways to reduce pollution caused by aviation; however, that is unlikely to be a viable solution that would be widely implemented. Companies are now looking at alternate sources of energy. Although there is a long way to go in this type of technology, there are some initial efforts that look bright.

2) Technology Summary: The Cassio

With an 800-Mile Range, This New Hybrid Electric Aircraft Will Soon Anchor a US-Based Charter Network

  • VoltAero is developing a series aircrafts known as The Cassio; the plane is a hybrid electric aircraft that can fly for 800 miles that fits 4-10 seats. They have concluded over 40 hours within 70+ flights with the demonstrator as they continue to test out the hybrid-electric Cassio.
  • The CEO stated that he is looking to develop a plan that uses a hybrid configuration which differentiates from current all electric technology in development. This would allow to use existing hardware.
  • A hybrid model would provide a second layer of security allowing for a second source of energy to always be available; a purely electric component would require a lot of battery and would potentially limit the distance the aircraft could go.
  • VoltAero has signed a deal with KinectAir which would have VoltAero developing the technology while KinectAir would develop the necessary uses and infrastructure to implement the new technology. These types of partnership will become more popular as development of hybrid and electric airplanes grow.

3) Stakeholders: Stakeholders involved would be manufacturers (ex. VoltAero), distributers, charter companies (KinectAir), and eventually flight customers.

4) Implementation

  • Testing, testing, testing – continue to test the plane for efficiency and safety
  • Research the market for these planes and what potential further partnerships are available
  • Modify existing blueprints and project growth of the aircraft


Discovering the Ocean Sustainably

  1. Sustainability Problem (Water/Waste):  Scientists, researchers, and policymakers around the world are eager to learn more about our oceans. They want to know what’s living in the vastness of the deep waters, but also learn to understand and predict climate change effects, pollution levels, and more. In order to study the ocean, there are currently these ‘profiling floats’ spread around the ocean which are “unmanned, robotic data gathering devices that monitor the sea’s physical, chemical and geological characteristics.” In theory, these are great for information gathering, but there structure is lithium powered and are polluting the ocean further. It is estimated that up to a thousand floats have expired and dropped to the ocean floor along with their lithium powered batteries.

2) Technology Summary: Seatrec Floats

These sustainable floats gather vital data about the ocean – while using the water to recharge 

Technology Website

  • Seatrec designed a float that would be powered by the water’s thermal energy to recharged itself instead of lithium batteries making their device powered fully by renewable energy.
  • The floater will be around 1.5 meters and weigh 30kg and uses a wax (Phase Change Material – PCM) that becomes solid in cold temperature and turns into liquid as it gets warmer. The temperature changes from deeper to more shallow depths makes the PCM contract and expand; as it expands it will create pressure and the generator will convert it to electrical energy.
  • In order to manage the creation of energy, the floater will lower itself to deep water, cold temperature and then rise again to the surface where the temperature becomes warmer. The floater will have a flotation device that will inflate and deflate the floater so it sinks and rises accordingly.
  • The technology will not only be a sustainable waste alternative but it will also collect significant data. These floats will be able to monitor the climate, improve hurricane forecasts, and optimize shipping routes – along with helping us understand the ocean better.

3) Organization Stakeholders:

Stakeholders involved with the Seatrec float include research institutions, international government organizations, product manufacturers, and oceanographers/related careers.

4) Implementation

  • Create prototype to be deployed in a pilot case study
  • Vet and compare product manufacturers that will be able to produce in large quantities in a sustainable way maintain mission of technology
  • Partner with research institution and organizations such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to implement Seatrec floats


‘Recurate’ – Resell Platform for Fashion

  1. Sustainability problem (Waste/Energy/Water): The consumption of clothing in the world has increased tremendously in the last few decades. With fast fashion trending globally, clothing production relies heavily on non-renewable energy sources and water to keep up with consumer demand. Finding ways to reuse clothing is extremely important as we search ways to reduce the effects of consumerism on our planet.

2. Technology Summary: Recurate | Resell function for fashion brands

Arlington-Based Recurate Helps Fashion Brands Facilitate Secondhand Sales

  • Second hand shopping is a trending market with resell platforms such as Poshmark and ThredUp helping consumer resell their clothing to people through an app. It is expected that the value for second hand clothing will more than triple in the next decade.
  • Consumers are becoming more self-aware of the brands they are buying from and are looking for alternative ways of shopping their favorite brands.
  • Recurate looks to connect with fashion companies directly to resell their brands via their current websites. Individual sellers will use the companies website to resell the brand directly to consumers making it easier for the company, buyers, and sellers.
  • Recurate oversees the shipment and processing; then the fashion company will compensate the seller either with a store credit or cash.

3) Organizational Stakeholders

Stakeholders in Recurate include fashion brands, consumers, and sellers. Fashion brands will utilize the platform to manage the resell of their clothing by using Recurate. They will also be able to gather data on resell and learn more about their customers. Consumers will use Recurate to more easily shop the brands they like in the resell market; they’ll be able to shop more strategically and conscientiously. Sellers will be able to use Recurate to market their resell product directly through the brands site which will likely drive sales and make it much easier for the average person to resell their clothes.

4) Implementation

  1. Build partnerships with brands. The portfolio of brands available through Recurate needs to be wide and include all types of style, prices, and target audience.
  2. Trial the platform with resellers/buyers. There needs to be input by buyers to ensure that it is customer friendly and intuitive. In addition, you want to make sure that people will actually use this function and not just continue to use their individual resell platforms. Survey and focus groups are a good way to start building feedback to improve Recurate.
  3. Expand operations. If Recurate is looking to have a large brand base, it needs to have the capacity to deliver on its promises of customer service, delivery, and platform maintenance.


At Home Composting Made Easy

1) Sustainability Problem (Waste): Waste management in America is a huge problem and as waste production continues to increase, we have limited places and mechanisms to get rid of it. According to Feeding America, the U.S.A wastes 108 billion pounds of food in a year with almost 40% of our food supply being wasted a year. Food is wasted from production to our homes. The EPA states that 30% of what we put in the trash can be composted. Composting has been around for thousands and thousands of years; new technology seeks to help normalize it in our daily lives to reduce and reuse waste.

2) Technology Summary: At-home Composting

“Lomi is tackling food waste with a home composting machine” The Hustle

  • Pela Labs created an at-home composting machine known as Lomi which would compost food waste into soil in as little as 4 hours.
  • Their goal is to normalize composting in homes and make it a staple kitchen appliance that everyone uses in their day to day.
  • Lomi would mimic the natural composting cycle through heating and chopping which would create soil; this would help reduce methane that is produced when food waste is left to decompose in landfills while also creating soil, a natural carbon reducer.
  • Their CEO claims that their plan to distribute 10 million Lomis would mirror “the same amount of work in helping with carbon capture and diversion as about 100m mature trees.”

3) Organizational Stakeholders

The largest stakeholders are the average consumer and would likely be most attractive to young professionals and families. Additional stakeholders can be large business and restaurants. Organizations with large offices would benefit from using this technology to manage food waste in lunchrooms/cafeterias. Restaurants are a huge producer of food waste and Lomi would help manage that waste.

4) Implementation

  1. Market heavily to young people using platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Tiktok. Younger generations are into trends and care more about the environment. They will eat this up!
  2. Create partnerships with large organizations including food and restaurant chains. For example, pairing up with companies like WeWork where they place Lomis in their buildings.
  3. Collect data on the effects of Lomi and record how much it is actually being used; this could be as simple as a software update that tracks how much food waste is being composted. This will help quantify the effect of the Lomi which can be used to drive investment and increase purchases.

5) Gro Intelligence